A few months ago, my friend committed suicide. Unfortunately, I have lost three friends and my baby nephew in the past four months, all of whom had so much living left to do. We called my friend Kyle Ring Ding, a nickname from high school that stuck. Ring Ding always suffered from depression, but no one expected him to take his own life. The following is a poem I wrote for him.
Somewhere in the woods of Hackettstown
there hangs a boy from a tree.
A boy, a boy, younger than me.
More than gravity brought him down.
Why did no one know he hurt so desperately?
A boy, a boy, left behind his family,
walked into the night with a rope and a wish to be free,
haunts me with the image of his feet above the ground.
It hurts my heart that you died so alone,
though I know that’s how you felt in a crowded room.
Hindsight tells me that I should have known.
A boy walked into the night alone, under the shining moon.
He found no solace, no comfort at home,
but he didn’t have to do this- he didn’t have to go so soon.